Diagnosing Corn Emergence Opportunities

Apr 24, 2020
Megan Hasenour | Marketing Communications Manager

Corn Seedling

It’s a great feeling when you see the first signs of sprouting in your fields. It brings you joy that your crop is emerging and ready for the growing season. It also brings each farmer hope, for a good season with a bountiful harvest.
It’s a good idea to make sure you go out, walk and inspect your fields. That way your likely to catch any opportunities and make a diagnosis when the symptoms are present and visible. Check for patterns of seedling emergence, uniformity of the stand and color of the leaves.
A few examples of some opportunities that one could come across in their field include:
  • Sudden wilt and then die, suspect is root damage. Most likely this would be from insect pressure. When an insect feeds on a root, it disables the plant to continue uptaking nutrients and moisture.
  • Yellow and wilted seedlings could be from a compacted area in the field that is poorly drained.
  • Water soaked leaves that eventually turn white is from freeze or frost damage. Some plants may be able to make a full recovery from this, but it if the roots froze, the plant will most likely die.
  • Yellow leaves could mean a nutrient deficiency, but where the discoloration is on the plant is more of an indicator. Discoloration in the bottom of the older, lower leaves – that usually a sign of nitrogen deficiency. If the discoloration is in the newer, younger leaves, that is generally a sign of a sulfur deficiency. Potassium also has a yellowing discoloration but it’s typically on the leaf margin.
There are many factors that come into play with seed emergence and not all signs present in the field will provide you with answers. With that being said, it is always important to discuss opportunities in your field and plant health options with your Superior Ag Agronomist. They can provide recommendations to you that fit your management practices.

Here are two videos from our Division Agronomist today in fields within our cooperative footprint.